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Octopus Digital Strategy

Nasser Sahlool

Welcome to Octopus. This series is an exploration of digital strategy, its place within the broader marketing ecosystem and the people who have made it their career. It is designed to help prospective digital strategists get started in the industry and chart a roadmap for their careers with insights and perspectives from those that have worked in this space and helped shape it.

Archived from iTunes at https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/octopus-digital-strategy/id994408383. Items in this collection are restricted.

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Octopus Digital Strategy
Apr 30, 2017 Nasser Sahlool
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“What is that feeling when you’re driving away from people and they recede on the plain till you see their specks dispersing? – it’s the too-huge world vaulting us, and it’s good-bye. But we lean forward to the next crazy venture beneath the skies”. Jack Kerouac always had a way to capture a moment. And this is the moment, at the 2-year mark, to say goodbye.
Octopus Digital Strategy
Apr 23, 2017 Nasser Sahlool
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Why do people buy? They believe that what you are selling is going to fulfill their need. And that's the key word...believe. For them to believe this fact, they have to trust. And in an industry based on artifice, to instil trust, nothing matters more than authenticity.
Octopus Digital Strategy
Apr 16, 2017 Nasser Sahlool
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We have previously discussed the emerging opportunities and threats presented by automation and artificial intelligence. Make no mistake, they are going to have a profound effect on our industry and society. But all is not lost. As we have previously outlined, the digital strategist is poised to thrive in this age of upheaval, and one of the key roles they will fulfill is the role of the integrator.
Octopus Digital Strategy
Apr 9, 2017 Nasser Sahlool
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You sit in the eye of the storm, pulled in a hundred different directions. How do you stay focused on the right outcomes? How do you turn the chaos and energy to your advantage? You do it by remembering who you work for. You do it by being the client advocate.
Octopus Digital Strategy
Apr 1, 2017 Nasser Sahlool
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Being a strategist is about delivering outcomes predicated on understanding and driving human behaviours and actions. It is about understanding who your audience is, how they think, what they want, and delivering a message that motivates them to take the actions you want. Yes, in order to do so, you need to understand how to align and manipulate digital tools to deliver the right experience to the right person at the right time. But at the heart of this is an understanding of people in all our...
Octopus Digital Strategy
Mar 26, 2017 Nasser Sahlool
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Consensus can be a dirty word. It implies compromise. Compromise invites committee thinking. And committee thinking is associated with safe and uninteresting solutions. But without consensus, we can't deliver a digital strategy. How do we achieve consensus while remaining daring and innovative?
Octopus Digital Strategy
Mar 19, 2017 Nasser Sahlool
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Digital media is having a moment, one that if not aggressively addressed will turn into a full blown crisis of confidence. Procter & Gamble CMO Marc Pritchard caused a sensation when he called on digital media providers to become transparent in the face of "crappy advertising accompanied by even crappier viewing experiences". Major advertisers, including the UK government, the Guardian and Havas have frozen all Google and YouTube advertising in the UK. What on earth is happening,...
Octopus Digital Strategy
Mar 13, 2017 Nasser Sahlool
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The Ancient Greeks wrote that you should know thyself. But self awareness is a seemingly rare trait. We rush to talk, to get our opinion across without thinking about the impact on how we are perceived. Why is self awareness so important, why is it so rare, and how can we become more self aware?
Octopus Digital Strategy
Mar 5, 2017 Nasser Sahlool
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Overlooked, sidelined and dismissed, soft skills are considered less important than hard technical skills and experience. But as you grow your career, they become ever more important. What are soft skills, why are they not considered important when you first start your career, and why do they become more important as you grow?
Octopus Digital Strategy
Feb 25, 2017 Nasser Sahlool
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When you're in the middle of the scrum, with a thousand requests coming at you at the same time, how do you prioritize? How do you deliver to expectations? How do you maintain the quality of your thinking and output? How do you stay sane?
Octopus Digital Strategy
Feb 19, 2017 Nasser Sahlool
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The strategist sits at the heart of the organization; is it any wonder your colleagues look to you for leadership? What are the traits that make a strategist a good leader, and how do you best provide that leadership as a strategist?
Octopus Digital Strategy
Feb 12, 2017 Nasser Sahlool
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It's a nebulous and subjective thing. Who decides what great work looks like, and why? What's more, we aren't creative directors. We are digital strategists. Our work isn't designed to inspire, amuse or move. Our work is designed to perform. So before you launch, and until you have results that validate your strategy, how can you know if your work is great?
Octopus Digital Strategy
Feb 5, 2017 Nasser Sahlool
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Bringing order to chaos. Simplicity to complexity. Vision to practicality. The strategist is there to align stakeholders, solve problems and achieve ambitious objectives. But doing so is not a straightforward task. Not unless you have a strategic framework to depend on.
Octopus Digital Strategy
Jan 29, 2017 Nasser Sahlool
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The spoken word. It connects in ways that the written does not. Maybe that is why the podcast, an old delivery platform that many thought was past its prime, is enjoying such a revival. The podcast allows us to tell stories, provide context and connect on a human level, and it holds a very important place in the role of an integrated digital strategy.
Octopus Digital Strategy
Jan 22, 2017 Nasser Sahlool
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You have an aggressive annual objective. You need an innovative strategy to achieve it. But each week you take on developing your strategy represents 2% of your year, and sets you that much further behind your goal. You now have a steeper hill to climb, and in less time. How do you square the requirement to spend an appropriate amount of time researching and planning, with the need for speed?
Octopus Digital Strategy
Jan 15, 2017 Nasser Sahlool
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‘If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up people together to collect wood and don’t assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea’. Writer, poet and aviator Antoine de Saint-Exupery’s beautifully articulated perspective on motivating people gives us insight into the role of the visionary. But what does it mean to be one, why is it important to be a visionary and why is the strategist the right person to take on that role?
Octopus Digital Strategy
Jan 9, 2017 Nasser Sahlool
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Strategy is not about immediate impact, but rather about long term achievement of ambitious objectives. It doesn't constantly change; if it did then it wouldn't be strategy. So once the strategy is set, and the implementation begins, is there a role for the strategist? I believe the strategist is critical for the successful execution of a strategy once it launches because they fulfill 3 key roles.
Octopus Digital Strategy
Jan 2, 2017 Nasser Sahlool
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"I cannot teach anybody anything, I can only make them think". This quote from Socrates, articulated over 2,000 years ago, sits at the heart of the teaching method he created, the Socratic Method. This debate driven approach to challenging ideas and finding common ground is as valid today in the context of the work of the strategist as it was in the classical age.